President Paul Kagame, who is also the Rwanda Defence Force’s (RDF) Commander-in-Chief, has promoted Major-General Innocent Kabandana to the rank of Lieutenant-General.
A statement issued by the RDF on September 26, indicates that Gen Kabandana’s promotion follows “his tour of duty in Mozambique” where he was the joint task force commander of Rwandan security forces in Cabo Delgado Province, where they were deployed in July 2021 to battle terrorists.
Rwandan troops, along with those from Mozambique, fully dislodged the terrorists and restored state authority especially in Palma and Mocimboa da Praia districts.
Kabandana, the former Commandant of Rwanda Military Academy and former commander of the Special Forces, holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Oklahoma Christian University, USA.
His other previous key appointments include being a Brigade staff officer in charge of Civil Military Affairs, Chief Instructor at Rwanda Military Academy in Gako, and Deputy Chief Military Personnel Officer in the United Nations Mission in South Sudan, UNMISS.
He was also once the Chairman of the Military Tender Board; Chief of Logistics, RDF HQ; Commandant of Rwanda Military Academy and Director of Rwanda Peace Academy.
Gen Kabandana, was the joint task force commander of Rwandan troops in Mozambique’s northernmost province, Cabo Delgado, where they were deployed in 2021 to battle terrorists.
The former Commandant of Rwanda Military Academy, together with Mozambique’s Maj Gen Cristóvão Artur Chume, joint force commander of the Mozambique Armed Defence Forces (FADM), orchestrated the purging of terrorists from nearly 90 percent of the Province of Cabo Delgado, in the last 30 days.
Barely a month after his deployment in Mozambique’s northern most Province, the strategic port city of Mocimboa da Praia which was the headquarters of the terrorists was captured as the terrorists fled.
Rwandan and Mozambican troops on August 8, 2021 captured Mocimboa da Praia, a city that had been the headquarters of the Islamic State-linked terrorist group since 2015.
Kabandana, a former Rwandan special forces Commander is a no-nonsense soldier who holds a Masters Degree in Business Administration from Oklahoma Christian University, USA.
Kabandana is one of those senior Rwandan officers who joined the military in 1990 and rose through the ranks to his current level.
He played a part in Rwanda’s liberation struggle, from 1990 to 1994 and is among the combatants that stopped the 1994 genocide.
By and large, Kabandana cuts the poise of an efficient, direct, and quite tough commander who will get the job done. Among others, he has combat, command, staff training and peacekeeping experience at tactical and operational levels. In the past, he also served as Defence Attache’ to the Embassy of Rwanda, Washington DC.